What is Radiography (X-ray)?

X-ray, also known as radiography, is the oldest and still most commonly ordered diagnostic imaging exam. 

X-ray involves exposing a specific part of the body to a small dose of high-energy photons to produce an image of the internal organs and bones.

These images are often the only imaging used to diagnose broken bones, arthritis, joint instability and soft tissue calcification. They are also used as the first line imaging because of their low cost and the ability to obtain them quickly.

Despite having obtained X-rays, other forms of imaging exams such as MRI or CT could still be needed in the diagnosis of your condition.


Is it safe to have an X-ray?

Be sure to tell your doctor before the procedure if you are pregnant or believe you could be pregnant, as x-rays are unsafe for the fetus.

X-ray examinations for most adults are generally safe, but they should not be indiscriminately performed without careful consideration of its utility and intended benefit.  

If you have questions about radiation exposure during an x-ray, visit the RadiologyInfo.org website.


How to prepare for your x-ray

There is no preparation needed for the majority of X-ray exams.

Most X-rays do not require an appointment. You can walk-in to our imaging centers during normal business hours and obtain the X-ray your provider has ordered.


Common uses of Radiography

  • View a specific area to diagnose abnormalities in the bone
  • Monitor the progression of a disease or condition, i.e., osteoporosis, spondylosis
  • Monitor the healing of a treatment, i.e., bone formation following fusion surgery